This month, we feel an irresistible pull towards a far away land to test our blades against those of Atomic Junk Shop‘s Greg Hatcher and David “Ace” Gutiérrez of Emmys.com. The field of battle, the Highlander franchise. It started as a 1986 cult fantasy film starring Christopher Lambert and Sean Connery, about a small group of sword-wielding Immortals, living in secret and battling each other across the centuries until only one remains to claim a vaguely-defined “Prize.”
It blossomed — or some say, decayed — into four critically-panned movie sequels, a long-running television show, an animated series, and even an anime film. We dig into topics of whether every film truly should be made into a franchise? Should there have, indeed, been only one?
We face these questions with…heart, faith and steel.
We close out Terminator Month with Week Four, where we jump into our homemade time displacement machine with Sam Mulvey ofAsk an Atheist to break our brains trying to sort out the continuity of the sequel…prequel…soft reboot(?) that recreates the franchise for a new generation: Terminator: Genisys.
When John Connor sends soldier Kyle Reese back to 1984 Los Angeles to protect his mother and safeguard the future, Reese finds himself in a different 1984 with a different Sarah Connor. The war across time between humans and machines has fractured the timeline. Now the only thing standing between the human race and utter destruction are Kyle, Sarah and an older, obsolete T-800 Terminator acting as their protector. Bring plenty of aspirin and a flow chart.
In Week Three of Terminator Month, we arrive in the post-James Cameron era of the franchise to rob a veterinary clinic and destroy downtown Los Angeles with Dave Brouillette of the Hands Free Football podcast. Our mission, to dig into the long-anticipated sequel that returned Arnold Schwarzenegger to the series that made him a star: Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines.
Now in his twenties, John Connor is living off the grid. Moving from town to town; job to job, running from his destiny as the would-be savior of the human race. And just when he thinks the future is safe, two more Terminators arrive from the future; one a killer and the other a protector. But this time, maybe nothing can stop worldwide nuclear doom.
That Terminator is out there! It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop… ever, until you are dead!
Welcome to Terminator Month, where every week we explore the franchise that made Arnold Schwarzenegger a household name. In Week One, we learn to assemble pipe bombs in a seedy motel with screenwriter Matt Goodman, as we look at the movie that started it all: 1984’s The Terminator.
In the year 2029, the post-nuclear war against the machines has finally been won by a small human resistance. But the machines have one last gambit. They’ve sent the perfect mechanized killing machine back to the year 1984, to kill a young waitress named Sarah Connor before she can give birth to the leader of the human resistance. The final battle for humanity will not be fought in the future, but in modern day Los Angeles.
January 2018 is the fifth anniversary of Radio vs. the Martians! and we’re doing something big.
This January, we’re launching what we’re calling Terminator Month! We’ll highlighting all four of the Schwarzenegger-led films in the science fiction/horror franchise franchise that made him a household name: Terminator.
Every Sunday in the month of January, we’ll be back with a new episode of our Arnold Schwarzenegger podcast celebration, Podcasta la Vista, Baby!
January 7th: The Terminator with Matt Goodman
January 14th: Terminator 2: Judgment Day with Joe Preti
January 21st: Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines with Dave Brouillette
January 28th: Terminator: Genisys with Sam Mulvey
It will be a month of explosions, time travel, post-apocalyptic wastelands, killer robots, helicopter crashes, catch phrases, murder, catch phrases and total vehicular mayhem!
We continue our chat with Joe Preti, and give our spoiler-iffic review of Hugh Jackman’s final turn as the mutant superhero Wolverine in Logan.
Have we hit peak superhero at the box office? Can a comic book adaptation transcend being just being a fun, popcorn crowd-pleaser, and become an emotionally potent piece of art? Is it time for the studios to stop bombarding us with constant references, callbacks and post-credit scenes, and just make a compelling story with powerfully written characters and strong performances?
Spoiler: The answer to all of these questions is yes.
Plus, we get derailed talking about Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. And try really, really, really hard to say something nice about it. Oh, boy.
Throw a rock in any direction, and you’ll hit someone’s zombie apocalypse survival plan. It’s astounding how ubiquitous it’s become. Everyone these days seems to have an elaborate strategy worked out to stay alive and thrive in the event that civilization falls in the wake of plagues, zombies, robot uprisings, alien invasions, natural disasters, nuclear war or even dragons.
There are even now magazines dedicated to this topic, and I’m not entirely sure how serious they’re intended to be.
But the truth is, it doesn’t matter how high your level is in Fallout: New Vegas, or how many issues of the Walking Dead you’ve read, or how many times you’ve seen the Road Warrior. Most people in the post-apocalypse are kinda…y’know…dead.
That prompts this month’s Mailbag question:
“Be Honest. How would you really fare in a post-apocalyptic setting?”
Mike and Casey get their asses to Mars with our theme song’s composer, Todd Maxfield-Matsumoto, and Ask an Atheist‘s Rebecca Friedman to talk about America’s favorite Austrian import, Arnold Schwarzenegger!
From cinematic machismo to the governor’s office of California, Schwarzenegger dominated the box office and ballot box for two decades. From Terminator to Twins, from Kindergarten Cop to Batman and Robin, few actors can match the cultural impact of the man who spawned a thousand catch phrases.
So crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of the women, because it’s time to talk about the man behind the muscles.